Hartford Police Say They Have Lead in People’s United Bank Robbery
White River Junction — Hartford police late yesterday said they were optimistic that they will be able to arrest the man who made off with a “few thousand dollars” during a Thursday afternoon robbery of the People’s United Bank.
Capt. Brad Vail said late yesterday afternoon that police had identified a suspect, developed several leads and hoped to make an arrest.
“We’ve got a pretty good lead on some stuff,” Capt. Brad Vail said. “The stars are lining up for sure.”
Around 2:30 p.m. Thursday, a man entered the People’s United Bank, at the intersection of Routes 4 and 5, wearing a disguise. He said he had a weapon, though he did not brandish one, and made off with cash. Authorities have not provided more information about what transpired inside the bank.
The man, described as roughly 6 feet tall, jumped into the passenger’s seat of a blue standard cab pickup truck waiting in a nearby driveway and fled the scene, police said.
His colorful disguise included a red hat, a tan coat, a taped-on mustache, and a “long wig,” according to police.
Roughly 20 minutes before the robbery, the same individual is believed to have entered the Mascoma Savings Bank on Sykes Mountain Ave., about a mile away, but left quickly.
Police suspect the man did not commit a robbery inside the Mascoma Savings Bank, which is adjacent to the U.S. Postal Service sorting facility and near Interstate 91, because there were several customers and tellers inside .
At People’s United Bank, only one teller was at the counter. Vail said he did not know how many customers were it the bank at the time.
In March 2012, a man who police described as wearing baggy blue jeans, a black hooded sweatshirt, a black baseball cap, and ski goggles robbed the branch of Mascoma Savings Bank located across the street from the People’s United Bank, and made off with an undisclosed amount of cash.
However, Vail said police do not believe Thursday’s robbery was connected to the March incident, or any other unsolved bank robberies in the area. Vail did not provide additional information.
“We don’t think it’s connected to any other bank robberies,” Vail said.
Thursday’s robbery, conducted in broad daylight on a well-trafficked road, triggered a large law enforcement response to the busy business strip, home of the Hartford Municipal Building and White River Co-Op food market, and prompted the nearby White River School to initiate a 35 minute lockdown.
It also drove other local police departments into action.
Lebanon police officers manned vehicle bridges from White River Junction into West Lebanon, and also scoured the West Lebanon rail yard in case the man had escaped on foot, Deputy Chief Gary Smith said.
Hanover police patrolled downtown, checking on downtown banks and monitoring radio transmissions in case they were needed to help apprehend any suspects, Capt. Frank Moran said. Anyone with information is asked to call Hartford police at (802) 295-9425.
Mark Davis can be reached at email@example.com or 603-727-3304.